Syrian Archive
Syrian Archive

Lost and Found

Syrian Archive’s work on content taken down from social media platforms

We have reinstated 650,000+ records to social media platforms

Syrian Archive’s work on content taken down from social media platforms

Gaining physical access to be able to investigate and report on human rights violations in Syria is very limited and dangerous for independent journalists, international news agencies, UN investigation bodies and international human rights organisations. This is the main reason Syrian Archive and other documentation groups depend on verified user generated content to assist in criminal case building as well as human rights research.

In the Syrian conflict, there are more hours of videos documenting the conflict than there have been hours in the conflict itself. Even now, eight years after the Syrian conflict began in 2011, more than 50 videos are uploaded to YouTube each day, making it an “accidental archive” that arguably allows anyone in the world to witness a conflict for the first time in history, practically in real time.

For this reason, since 2014 we have archived content from thousands of social media channels and accounts - images, videos, and posts that are both invaluable historical artifacts and potential evidence of human rights abuses. Some of these channels are long-standing media houses that have been documenting human rights violations in Syria since 2011.

Over the past few years we have led the field in discussions on content moderation through our advocacy and policy work. Our organisation is one of the only groups worldwide who has quantitative data on the real impact of content moderation policies, as well a qualitative data on the types of content being removed. This includes our monthly publication of statistics highlighting summary statistics of content made unavailable that we have securely preserved on our infrastructure.

It also includes engaging with press to advocate for a more critical approach towards content moderation implementation, working with social media companies to reinstate hundreds of thousands of records, writing policy papers addressing the risks of content moderation policies on human rights documentation, and involvement in the Christchurch Call Advisory network.

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Monthly takedown updates

monthly updates


Syrian Archive Documents Content Taken Down on Monthly Basis - May 2023

June 6, 2023

Hundreds of thousands of pieces of data are no longer available on social media platforms



Syrian Archive

The Syrian Archive is fully independent and accepts no money from governments directly involved in the Syrian conflict. We are seeking individual donations to carry out our work. Please consider supporting our work through our Patreon page.

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